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Adapt to survive: Intelligent technology is vital for corporate banking

The digital financial services landscape is changing at an unprecedented rate. Facing increased pressure from customers and competitors, banks are being left no choice but to transform themselves in order to survive.

Amid this rapidly changing environment, there is an argument that change isn’t a bad thing due to the wealth of opportunities presented, that if grasped, could reap rewards. After all, the financial services industry is quickly becoming one of the prime enablers of the digital economy.

It’s true that consumers expect digital experiences from their banks that rival those of retailers and other goods and service providers. Today, corporate customers are also demanding more efficient operations, greater connectivity, and faster delivery of innovative products.

Leading banks, along with FinTechs and challengers, are already stepping up to meet this challenge. In fact, according to a report compiled by PwC, 77% of financial institutions will increase internal efforts to innovate, with many businesses embracing the disruptive nature of FinTech. As a result, all financial institutions recognise that embracing this change offers the best chance of realising new competitive advantages. Bank executives who hesitate may cede their most valuable benefits and even risk the future of their companies.


Challenging the challenger banks

It’s clear that corporate banks need to face digital disruption head-on with strategies and technologies that help drive digitalisation.

By embracing the same type of intelligent banking that challenger banks have chosen – advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), the Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain, to deliver excellent customer experiences that consumers have come to expect – traditional banks can not only compete, but win.

The reason why traditional banks are best placed to adopt intelligent banking practices used by challengers, regards the notion that they can quickly and effectively accelerate their digital transformation, and can do so without the time or costs of being a first mover.

One company that is a prime example of intelligent banking is PayPal. The company, which supports 7.8 billion payment transactions annually in more than 200 countries around the world, is deploying technology that enables the use of data-driven intelligence across the entire value chain.

By using the solutions to streamline its finance processes, PayPal is increasing data quality and granularity and reducing the time needed to acquire data. A rich analytics layer will substantially automate its finance function – decreasing the number of manual processes, increasing accuracy, and freeing employees to perform more valuable activities.


Technology-driven process value

One essential part of the transformation journey is the adoption of intelligent technologies that can help optimise and extend business processes. Using IoT, AI, ML, blockchain, and advanced analytics, banks can transform into event-driven businesses that automate repetitive tasks and enable employees to focus on higher-value responsibilities. They can also invent new business models and revenue streams by monetising data-driven capabilities and applying core competencies in new ways.

Lloyds Banking Group, a leading UK-based financial services organisation, is a case-in-point of an institution that is pursuing digital transformation. Using intelligent technologies, the firm is a leader in cash management and payments processes for corporate and institutional clients.

Lloyds is focusing on customer experience by developing sophisticated self-service features that use complex data analytics and cloud-based solutions. An API-first platform will help clients embrace opportunities emerging through open banking and transparent connectivity across a core digital platform accelerates the payments process.

Here are some examples of how intelligent technologies can help other banks to optimise commercial banking practices.

  • Service ticket intelligence solutions can use ML technology to efficiently process inbound social media posts, emails, and other channel interactions. These solutions can also automatically determine classifications, routing, and responses.
  • Customer retention solutions can help banks anticipate customer behaviours, such as account closures and credit card cancellations, with instant insight into transactional data and digital interaction points.
  • Conversational customer experience bots can provide a humanised way for customers to interact with the bank, improving satisfaction. Chatbots have rapidly become the norm for customers to interact with, a form of AI which evolves and gets smarter.
  • Predictive and deep analytics tools can gain insight from structured and unstructured data, helping banks anticipate customer behaviour, respond to their needs, and predict the next-best step or product offer.
  • Reconciliation automates manual tasks to reduce error rates, costs, and processing time.


Connectivity needs to be seamless between banks and corporate clients

The future of banking will not be a continuation of the past, as new technologies will transform banking as we know it.

Due to the vast scope and speed of evolution in regulation, customer behaviour and technology, coupled with the emergence of new competitors, banks need to embrace intelligent technologies to drive value in the next-generation economy.

By embedding automation into business processes, supporting massive connectivity, connecting the IoT, ML, and AI, and enabling data-driven insights from advanced analytics, banks can help meet the challenges of a dynamic industry.

Sometimes change is hard. But for commercial banks, there’s no question that it’s incredibly valuable. Are you ready to embrace the benefits of intelligent technologies?




Comments: (1)

Ambrish Parmar
Blog group founder
Ambrish Parmar - Thought leader and Start-up Advisor - London 20 June, 2019, 10:52Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Hi Roland,

Thank you for sharing - corporate banking is underserved from a technology prespective and your observations resonate. Ambrish - Group Founder.

Roland Bloesch

Roland Bloesch

VP, Global Head of regulated Industries

SAP Customer Experience

Member since

26 Mar 2019


Zürich Area

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This post is from a series of posts in the group:

Banking Strategy, Digital and Transformation

Latest thinking in respect to Banking Strategy, Digital and Transformation. Harnessing our collective wisdom to make banking better. Ambrish Parmar

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